Results 1 to 10 of 10
  1. #1

    • MiceChat News Team
    • Top Shelf!
    • Offline

    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    BANZAI INSTITUTE for Biomedical Engineering and Strategic Information
    Posts
    13,137

    Lucas to studios: Let's Get Small - Variety 10/5/06

    Lucas: Let's get small
    Helmer sees shrinking pic biz


    By David S. Cohen
    Variety
    October 5, 2006

    George Lucas has a message for studios that are cutting their slates and shifting toward big-budget tentpoles and franchises: You've got it all wrong.

    The creator of "Star Wars," which stamped the template for the franchise-tentpole film, says many small films and Web distribution are the future.
    And in case anyone doubts he means it, Lucasfilm is getting out of the movie business.

    "We don't want to make movies. We're about to get into television. As far as Lucasfilm is concerned, we've moved away from the feature film thing, because it's too expensive and it's too risky.

    "I think the secret to the future is quantity," Lucas told Daily Variety. "Because that's where it's going to end up."

    Lucas spoke to Daily Variety after the groundbreaking ceremony for the for the renamed School of Cinematic Arts at USC.

    He gave $175 million -- $100 million for endowment and $75 million for buildings -- to his alma mater. But he said that kind of money is too much to put into a film.

    Spending $100 million on production costs and another $100 million on P&A makes no sense, he said.

    "For that same $200 million I can make 50-60 two-hour movies. That's 120 hours as opposed to two hours. In the future market, that's where it's going to land, because it's going to be all pay-per-view and downloadable.
    "You've got to really have a brand. You've got to have a site that has enough material on it to attract people."

    He said he's even discussed this with Pixar's Steve Jobs and John Lasseter.

    "If you don't do very many movies, and you're really lucky, and you really know what you're doing, you can get away with it. But you know at some point you're going to lose a game."

    Lucas said he believes Americans are abandoning the moviegoing habit for good.

    "I don't think anything's going to be a habit anymore. I think people are going to be drawn to a certain medium in their leisure time and they're going to do it because there is a desire to do it at that particular moment in time. Everything is going to be a matter of choice. I think that's going to be a huge revolution in the industry."

    That doesn't mean Lucasfilm is diving into online distribution, though. "Having had a lot of experience in this area, we're not rushing in," he said. "we're trying to find out exactly where the monetization is coming from. We're not interested in jumping down a rat hole until such time as it finally figures itself out."

    Nor is Lusasfilm's exit from features instant or absolute. "Indiana Jones 4" is still in development. "Steve (Spielberg) and I are still working away, trying to come up with something we're happy with. Hopefully in a short time we will come to an agreement. Or something," Lucas said, without a great deal of enthusiasm.

    Lucasfilm also is working on a film about the Tuskegee airmen of World War II called "Red Tails."

    "I've been working on that for about 15 years," he said, adding he's also been working on "Indy 4" for 15 years.

    And Lucas Animation does plan to start making feature films -- eventually.
    "Right now we're doing television, which looks great. I'm very very happy with it," he said of his animation division. "And out of doing the animation, we're getting the skill set and the people and putting the studio in place so we can do a feature. But it's probably going to be another year before we have the people and the systems in place to do a feature film."
    Lucas admitted the big-budget strategy has done well for him in the past, but, "We're not going to do the $200 million investments."

    He calls himself "semi-retired" but reiterated his plans to direct, "small movies, esoteric in nature," after his other projects are launched. He expects to serve as exec producer on the two features and the TV shows, including a live-action "Star Wars" skein.

    At the USC groundbreaking, Lucas was honored amid canon-shots of confetti and fanfares from the USC Marching Band for his gift, the largest in the school's history.

    Other bizzers in attendance included Lucas pals Robert Zemeckis and Spielberg.

    Lucas said the gift is intended to set an example for the rest of the entertainment industry, as well as other universities.

    "In a lot of industries, the people in the industry give a lot of money to the schools that produce the people who are their employees," he said, pointing to the auto industry as an example. "The film industry doesn't seem to be too enthusiastic about that idea. I'd love to see the industry do more."

    "As self-interest, it's good to have the best trained people working for you. And the best trained people come from film school.

    "The world of moving images hasn't had a lot of respect (in academia)," said Lucas. "But it's the major form of communication in the 21st century." This $175 million, he said, is meant to "put other universities on notice that this is an important discipline that needs to be fostered."
    http://www.variety.com/VR1117951284.html

  2. #2

    • New Member
    • Offline

    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Posts
    14

    Re: Lucas to studios: Let's Get Small - Variety 10/5/06

    I beg to disagree with Mr. Lucas. I believe that the movie theater business isn't going to die down. It is part of our social engagement. The recent technology has enabled us to do more at home but there will always be the need to go out and meet and be with people. It's called socializing George! And right now the movies are still the major part of that.

  3. #3

    • Pull your "Magic" finger?
    • Offline

    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Lake Cowichan, BC, Canada
    Posts
    234

    Re: Lucas to studios: Let's Get Small - Variety 10/5/06

    Quote Originally Posted by Thempark78 View Post
    I beg to disagree with Mr. Lucas. I believe that the movie theater business isn't going to die down.
    I greatly disagree with you. As a former theatre manager, I saw the prices driving up and up, with the movie quality going down and down. Other than huge expensive blockbusters which really turn out the fans. Piracy is a huge issue, which is why so many DVD's are out within weeks of a film's 4 or 5 week run. TV is becoming more and more filled with artistic effluent. Once the media world becomes PPV, movie theatres are dead in the water, or will be run by distribution monopolies as they are in Canada.

    People will socialize, but it won't be in front of a big screen in the dark. Try bars, restaurants, malls, sporting events, theme parks. More computer central entertainment, with VOIP and video built in, to talk to your friends around the world while you both (or all) are watching an internet broadcast. Chats and blogs will be real time and fully A/V.

  4. #4

    • Senior Minion
    • Offline

    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    Splash Mountain
    Posts
    7,929
    Blog Entries
    5

    Re: Lucas to studios: Let's Get Small - Variety 10/5/06

    I just download Movie off the web, WHY should I have to pay 10 bucks to see a cruddy movie? But I do see good Movies in the theaders like Star Wars 3, Pirates, V for Vendetta etc.
    Until they lower Ticket Prices I dont see why everyone does not just wathc movies off the web.

  5. #5

    • Banned User
    • Offline

    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Posts
    2,634

    Re: Lucas to studios: Let's Get Small - Variety 10/5/06

    I agree with Lucas. Most people just don't want to go the movies anymore. I myself don't like to go for several reasons chief among them the fact the peopel that are in the theater would rather talk and make noise then quietly enjoy the film. Plus 90% of the stuff being pumped out of the studios is CGI garbage now adays. Movies like Revenge of the sith, v for vendetta, and Spiderman are few and far between. Not worth spending $10 to go to a noisey theater to see.

    Your much better off watching the movie at home with superior picture quality on a big screen tv with surround sound.

  6. #6

    • Banned User
    • Offline

    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Posts
    430

    Re: Lucas to studios: Let's Get Small - Variety 10/5/06

    Quote Originally Posted by JerrodDRagon View Post
    I just download Movie off the web, WHY should I have to pay 10 bucks to see a cruddy movie?
    If it's a cruddy movie, why download it?

  7. #7

    • MiceChat News Team
    • Top Shelf!
    • Offline

    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    BANZAI INSTITUTE for Biomedical Engineering and Strategic Information
    Posts
    13,137

    Re: Lucas to studios: Let's Get Small - Variety 10/5/06

    in related news:
    'Star Wars' Creator Readies 'Clone Wars'

    Oct 5, 2:23 PM (ET)


    University of Southern California alumnus George Lucas is shown with an artist's rendering of a new building at the USC School of Cinematic Arts, a result of a $175 million donation from the Lucasfilm Foundation, following groundbreaking ceremonies on the campus in Los Angeles Wednesday, Oct. 4, 2006. (AP Photo/Reed Saxon)

    LOS ANGELES (AP) - The wars aren't over for "Star Wars" creator George Lucas. Lucas said Wednesday he's making an animated TV series of "Clone Wars" that could air next year, although he hasn't sold the show to a network yet. The series is set during the time when the Republic is fighting a civil war against separatists led by Count Dooku.
    The mythic period hasn't been dealt with too much in the popular "Star Wars" movies, so "it's a fun place to go," Lucas said.
    "It basically has all the main characters" such as Anakin Skywalker and Obi-Wan Kenobi, Lucas said, but the stars who played them in the movies won't voice them for the TV show.
    "There's nobody famous," Lucas told The Associated Press in a telephone interview.
    The show is planned as a continuation of the Emmy-winning "Clone Wars" that aired in 25 episodes on the Cartoon Network from 2003 to 2005. That series used limited animation. The new version will use 3-D computer graphics.
    It's one of many projects being pursued by Lucas, including a fourth "Indiana Jones" movie. "We're working on it. We haven't agreed on a script yet," Lucas said.
    http://apnews.myway.com/article/20061005/D8KIKRIO2.html


  8. #8

    • Earth Intruder
    • Offline

    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    The Tangent Universe
    Posts
    3,060

    Re: Lucas to studios: Let's Get Small - Variety 10/5/06

    Quote Originally Posted by Ghostbuster626 View Post
    I agree with Lucas. Most people just don't want to go the movies anymore. I myself don't like to go for several reasons chief among them the fact the peopel that are in the theater would rather talk and make noise then quietly enjoy the film. Plus 90% of the stuff being pumped out of the studios is CGI garbage now adays. Movies like Revenge of the sith, v for vendetta, and Spiderman are few and far between. Not worth spending $10 to go to a noisey theater to see.

    Your much better off watching the movie at home with superior picture quality on a big screen tv with surround sound.
    TOTALLY disagree with you here. There's something about the shared experience of going to a movie theatre, sitting in the dark with strangers and reacting to the movie. I really feel sorry for people who don't get this feeling.

    Of course there are problems in theatres (i.e. people making noise, cell phones, etc. that have nothing to do with reacting to the movie), but watching at home it just isn't as special. You think Snakes on a Plane would have been that fun to watch if it was direct to video?

    And Revenge of the Sith WAS CGI garbage, sorry.

    Lucas is such a hypocritical SOB. How many years ago was it that he was saying digital is the way to go, and trying to strongarm movie theatres into purchasing mega-expensive digital players to play HIS movies?

    Now he's doing some crappy cartoons and so feature movies are dead? Yeah, just because YOU'RE doing something, YOU'RE on the forefront, Lucas? BS. You wanna tell your old palsy-walsy Spielberg to stop making feature films because they're like, so dead?

    (Lucas, you spineless worm, do us a favor while you're on your "it's too riiiiissskkkyyyy" tirade and get yourself UNINVOLVED with Indy 4, please?)

    Oh and the best line? "I think the secret to the future is quantity," Lucas told Daily Variety. "Because that's where it's going to end up."

    Sure, quantity over quality. Again, just because it's LUCAS' motto du jour, that's where things are gonna end up?

    Lucas: "Whee, look at me! I'm a visionary!"

    Whatever.
    I am grateful... grapefruit! ~ Bjork (upon winning Best International Female Artist at the BRIT Awards)



    Founding Member of the BA!

  9. #9

    •   
    • Minion
    • Offline

    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    In a 3D movie theater
    Posts
    4,834

    Re: Lucas to studios: Let's Get Small - Variety 10/5/06

    I like to think of it like this...

    1. The days of "Singles and Doubles" are over. Production companies are turning to TV because the economics are much better.

    2. The days of Tent Poles are numbered too... Which is whey we are seeing sequels...

    Generally speaking what really seems to me is that there is a market saturation... There can be no more growth...

    Piracy is a symptom of this and the fact that technology has out paced the film industry... So it too needs to either innovate or die, much like the record industry...

    I don't think cinima is dead... It just needs a kick in the teeth to go digital and change the way it does business.

    If anything is going to die it is the corner Video Store.
    Check out my other blog:

  10. #10

    • Neep meep beep
    • Offline

    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Seven miles from Disneyland/DCA!
    Posts
    6,991

    Re: Lucas to studios: Let's Get Small - Variety 10/5/06

    I think that this news item is more symptomatic of how the new book "The Long Tail" has taken over Hollywood by storm. There was an LA Times article about how almost every studio has followed this new trend, almost immediately, and about how widely read and distributed this book is among studio executives.

    The premise of the Long Tail is that entertainment industries, whether it be books, movies, games, or music, can't rely on huge blockbusters for profits. With the rise of a more segmented market via amazon.com, itunes, and netflix, to give some examples, studios have the following choices:

    1. Build, promote, and then sell large blockbuster movies/albums/bestsellers, like Titanic, selling millions, (with a graph that looks like a smooth curve straight up and back down) or;

    2. Build and promote smaller faster sub genres (cheerleading vampire DVD/animated grasshopper movies/ska-polka cd/sudoko pop up book), which ends up totalling billions, and sells for years, with a "longer tail"
    in sales over the long run.

    This is an entirely new economic model for the media and entertainment industries, one that is just beginning to show its power. Unlimited selection is revealing truths about what consumers want and how they want to get it in service after service, from DVDs at Netflix to music videos on Yahoo! Launch to songs in the iTunes Music Store and Rhapsody. People are going deep into the catalog, down the long, long list of available titles, far past what's available at Blockbuster Video, Tower Records, and Barnes & Noble. And the more they find, the more they like. As they wander further from the beaten path, they discover their taste is not as mainstream as they thought (or as they had been led to believe by marketing, a lack of alternatives, and a hit-driven culture).


    As the book says:


    "An analysis of the sales data and trends from these services and others like them shows that the emerging digital entertainment economy is going to be radically different from today's mass market. If the 20th- century entertainment industry was about hits, the 21st will be equally about misses.


    For too long we've been suffering the tyranny of lowest-common-denominator fare, subjected to brain-dead summer blockbusters and manufactured pop. Why? Economics. Many of our assumptions about popular taste are actually artifacts of poor supply-and-demand matching - a market response to inefficient distribution.
    The main problem, if that's the word, is that we live in the physical world and, until recently, most of our entertainment media did, too. But that world puts two dramatic limitations on our entertainment.
    The first is the need to find local audiences. An average movie theater will not show a film unless it can attract at least 1,500 people over a two-week run; that's essentially the rent for a screen. An average record store needs to sell at least two copies of a CD per year to make it worth carrying; that's the rent for a half inch of shelf space. And so on for DVD rental shops, videogame stores, booksellers, and newsstands.
    In each case, retailers will carry only content that can generate sufficient demand to earn its keep. But each can pull only from a limited local population - perhaps a 10-mile radius for a typical movie theater, less than that for music and bookstores, and even less (just a mile or two) for video rental shops. It's not enough for a great documentary to have a potential national audience of half a million; what matters is how many it has in the northern part of Rockville, Maryland, and among the mall shoppers of Walnut Creek, California.
    There is plenty of great entertainment with potentially large, even rapturous, national audiences that cannot clear that bar. For instance, The Triplets of Belleville, a critically acclaimed film that was nominated for the best animated feature Oscar this year, opened on just six screens nationwide. An even more striking example is the plight of Bollywood in America. Each year, India's film industry puts out more than 800 feature films. There are an estimated 1.7 million Indians in the US. Yet the top-rated (according to Amazon's Internet Movie Database) Hindi-language film, Lagaan: Once Upon a Time in India, opened on just two screens, and it was one of only a handful of Indian films to get any US distribution at all. In the tyranny of physical space, an audience too thinly spread is the same as no audience at all.
    The other constraint of the physical world is physics itself. The radio spectrum can carry only so many stations, and a coaxial cable so many TV channels. And, of course, there are only 24 hours a day of programming. The curse of broadcast technologies is that they are profligate users of limited resources. The result is yet another instance of having to aggregate large audiences in one geographic area - another high bar, above which only a fraction of potential content rises.
    The past century of entertainment has offered an easy solution to these constraints. Hits fill theaters, fly off shelves, and keep listeners and viewers from touching their dials and remotes. Nothing wrong with that; indeed, sociologists will tell you that hits are hardwired into human psychology, the combinatorial effect of conformity and word of mouth. And to be sure, a healthy share of hits earn their place: Great songs, movies, and books attract big, broad audiences."

Similar Threads

  1. Sanders signs Walt Disney Studios deal - Variety 3/21/07
    By ALIASd in forum MiceChat News Archive
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 03-20-2007, 09:37 PM
  2. Walt Disney Studios lights Sparkler - Variety 2/28/07
    By ALIASd in forum MiceChat News Archive
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 02-28-2007, 08:32 AM
  3. Small Studios Update !!!!! 02/03
    By DLRP_bopazot in forum Disneyland Paris
    Replies: 18
    Last Post: 02-11-2007, 01:31 PM
  4. DreamWorks Studios gets Small for COO - PRNewswire 11/6/06
    By ALIASd in forum MiceChat News Archive
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 11-07-2006, 10:19 AM
  5. Disney's Big Price for a Small, Small World - Motley Fool - 8/7/2006
    By sir clinksalot in forum MiceChat News Archive
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 10-04-2006, 07:27 PM

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •